The Yard Dundee

I’m trying to be more consistent/frequent with my blog posts so here’s another one!

I’m just back from a lovely break away on the Isle of Bute to celebrate a Big Birthday which was just idyllic. The sun was out so we were mostly beach-based, and I even went swimming IN THE SEA! Twice! At the beginning of this year I didn’t think that was ever going to be possible due to an ongoing health issue, so I was over the moon to be feeling physically able to do it. I was rewarded with sight of four seals popping up to see what all the splashing about was! All in all the perfect end to the summer.

Anyway, it’s back to business this week, particularly with the start of the busy season just around the corner. The calendar is filling up with markets and fairs so I thought this would be a good time to mention that the first one is coming up soon:

You can find me (as Rudy and the Rowan Tree) at the Yard @ 71 Brewing, Ure Street, Dundee from 11-4 on Saturday, October 1st – there will be loads of fellow creatives, guest food traders and DJs, plus it’s a really cool venue with great beer if that’s your thing!

Hope to see you there!

Autumn Almanac

Another summer of record-breaking temperatures comes to an end…spectacularly in Perthshire with torrential rain and flooding replacing scorched earth and water shortages.

As we move into September, I’m trying not to focus on the implications of these extremes in the weather and staving off the melancholic thoughts by looking forward to my birthday (it’s a big one!), enjoying the changing colours on my daily walks, and planning the rest of the year’s making.

Wooden Autumn Decorations by HooperHart on Folksy
Fox Brooches by HooperHart on Folksy
Starlit Fox mini framed diorama by HooperHart on Folksy

The calendar is filling up with festive events and it’s looking like I’ll be a bit busier with these than last year, now that things have returned to normal (whatever that is!). Keep checking my ‘SHOP’ page for details of where you can find me in person this winter. See you soon πŸ™‚

What makes me happy

Hello! Thank you for visiting my little corner of the internet πŸ™‚ I have been neglecting it quite badly – I was a little shocked to see that I have only done 3 posts on here in the past year…3!!! That is very poor I think you’ll agree…in my defence it’s been a difficult year and my mind has been elsewhere for much of it. Health/work/money issues, bereavement and moving to a different county (and not yet having a home of our own) are all things which have really gotten in the way. Making my work always makes me feel better by taking me out of myself and giving me focus, but there have been so many times when I’ve felt ‘what’s the point?’ However, the only thing for it is to keep going and keep doing what makes me happy (where possible)! So in lieu of any new work, here’s a wee round-up of some of my favourite pieces from the past year…

I’ll be back at some point with some new pieces and hopefully more positive news! Thanks for reading and remember, you can follow me on Instagram Facebook and Twitter for all my latest news

Festive Fairs

Ok, so I’m a little bit late with this seeing as two have already been and gone, but anyway – if you missed me in St Monans and Strathaven you can catch me in a few more places (virtually and IRL) in case any of you need some Christmas gift inspiration!

My next event is online – Tea Green Marketplace, a favourite of mine showcasing the best of art, design and craft currently being produced in Scotland. I’ll be participating as HooperHart for this one…links to event coming soon.

The following weekend I’ll be joining our friends at Folksy as Rudy & the Rowan Tree for the inaugural online Folksy Local Scotland Christmas Market

My final in-person fair of the season is one I’ve not done before but I’m very excited about – the wasps Winter Market at the Briggait in Glasgow. WASPS is an award-winning charity which provides affordable studio space for over 800 artists working in Scotland. I’ll be exhibiting as HooperHart at this one, and it’s sure to be a great event with lots of fantastic artists and designers, so pop along if you can on December 11th & 12th.

Light The North

I mentioned that I was working on a sculpture for the Wild in Art Light the North art trail way back in December; well after a couple of covid-related delays, I’m happy to report that Light the North is now live! Shining a light on the streets of the North-East of Scotland, each lighthouse will be auctioned off in early November 2021 to raise funds for Clan Cancer Support.

My lighthouse is called Ahoy There! and is sponsored by North Star Shipping. It is located on the Wellington Suspension Bridge in the Torry area of Aberdeen. Unfortunately I’m not able to travel there to see it in situ but have been enjoying all the photographs of it that have been popping up on Instagram:

There are 50 lighthouses across the North East, Orkney and Shetland and there’s some absolute belters so if you’re up that way make sure and keep your eyes peeled!

Images by viczmitch, headbeeguy, cockapoo.sky, flyawaylisa, racheldaviesmosaics, danoaberdeen, frame.rachel, thepereheadtrail, walkscalloway, iainamhenderson, roxies.adventures on Instagram

Tea Green Marketplace Month

Just a quickie to let you know that there’s a month of online events starting on July 1st organised by the brilliant Tea Green Events There will be three weekends of online markets (I’ll be taking part in the first one on July 3rd & 4th), an exclusive online shop, virtual open studios, online workshops and even a real life treasure hunt!

There will be hundreds of amazingly talented Scotland-based artists, designers and makers involved, and I’ll also have a special offer available for the entire month, so follow Tea Green on Facebook and Instagram to keep up to date with all the events.

Hope to see you there!

Folksy Featured Maker

I am very excited to tell you that as Rudy and the Rowan Tree I am Folksy’s featured maker! πŸŽ‰πŸ’₯πŸ’—

I was over the moon to be invited to be a featured maker, and join a select group of wonderfully talented UK-based makers, artists and designers. Each of us are interviewed for the Folksy blog (quite challenging – it made me really consider what I do and why) and there’s also a Folksy Instagram Takeover!

I am so glad I went with opening a Folksy shop for my side hustle Rudy and the Rowan Tree – the team are really helpful and supportive and the wider community of sellers are a lovely bunch! I like the fact that the Folksy platform is relatively small and easy to navigate, and is always my go-to place for good quality, handcrafted gifts. Starting as a little sideline to use up some wooden off-cuts two years ago, RATRT has become a part of my business where I can just mess about with paint, experiment with colour and texture, and generally go where the mood takes me! Who knows where that will be, but it’s guaranteed to be fun (for me if not for anyone else!).

Thanks for reading and please check out my Folksy interview here x

First Fair of the Year!

Yes, it’s happening (albeit online only) – my first fair of the year takes place this weekend (15th & 16th of May) at 10am!

This one is a bit different in that all the ‘stallholders’ have uploaded their work to one online gallery to make it easier for customers to browse and shop, so instead of purchasing from numerous different online shops, everything can be placed into one basket and paid for in one transaction.

I’m offering free postage on everything and there’ll be loads of lovely Scottish-made goodies from food and booze to fine art to peruse, so pop along this weekend!

Thanks for reading x

Roll on Springtime

Once again the passing of time has caught me by surprise and the first few months of the year have gone by in a flash; the clocks go forward next weekend and the first lambs of the year have been spotted in the fields. Both of which I am very happy about because boy, has it been a long, hard winter. I found it a real struggle this year, and for the first time I really felt my age and became pre-occupied by the somewhat unappealing reality of growing older in a cold climate. Of course, lockdown no doubt contributed to my general state of mind, as I’m sure it did for many. So this year, more than any other, I am very much looking forward to springtime!

On the upside I am very fortunate to have been kept busy recently due to stockists (old and new) ordering my work; my heart goes out to all those small independent shops and galleries who have had their doors closed for three months now – it must be such a struggle to keep going, adapt their businesses, and stay positive…so I am very grateful to still be asked to supply them with my work.

Bothy brooches and bird brooches for Strom

Mountain and bothy pictures – an exclusive for The Modern Croft

I sometimes find customer enquiries (be it private or from galleries) can lead to new ideas and ways of working.. Some of my current staple designs have had their genesis in conversations with customers, which shows it’s always good to be open to suggestions and not get too precious about your work – you never know where it might lead you!

More on that later but for now, thanks for reading x

Hello 2021!

So 2020 is finally over, and there probably aren’t many folk who won’t be sorry to see the back of it. We can only hope 2021 will be an improvement. I’d like to say a huge thank you for all the support I received during that strange and difficult year, whether it was online likes, comments, shares, reviews or purchases – it all really helped get me through it.

To kick off 2021 I’m having a little sale in my Etsy shop (10% off when you spend Β£20) and Folksy (10% off everything) – use the code HELLO2021 in both!

January is usually a quiet month and therefore a good opportunity to plan ahead and start new work – I’ve already got a list of things I want to get started on so watch this space!

Thanks for reading and all the best for 2021 x